discussions going on, which is alarming by any measure, and what republicans are saying is, please, mr. president, let's come back to the table. now, you might ask, well, why aren't there discussions going on and one answer that i've gotten from democratic sources is that they feel that they really have a winning strategy here because they are right when it comes to public opinion, they say, of wanting to raise the rates for the wealthiest americans and the alternative is that at the end of the year if we go off the fiscal cliff, they really believe that republicans will get the blame. so that's why maybe they are sort of running out the clock a little bit making it harder for republicans to negotiate more at the end of the day. >> so just to make it clear, because the republican plan does not include a tax increase, a tax increase on the wealthy, the president isn't going to deal? he's not going to get on the phone with john boehner, he's not going to do anything? >> reporter: well, it's hard to imagine at some point that they are not going to get on the phone, that they are not going to have real negotiations. but right now, they are not.